WKU Public Radio News

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The award-winning news team at WKU Public Radio consists of Dan Modlin, Kevin Willis, Lisa Autry, and Joe Corcoran.

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Politics
11:59 am
Tue November 5, 2013

Rand Paul Facing Allegations of Using Plagiarized Material in Op-Ed Piece

U.S. Sen. Rand Paul is considering a presidential bid in 2016.

Senator Rand Paul is facing charges of plagiarizing material used in an op-ed article. The Kentucky Republican has also had to explain in recent weeks how Wikipedia entries were used in his speeches without attribution.

Sen. Paul wrote an opinion piece about mandatory minimum prison sentences for The Washington Times that was published in September. An article posted on Buzzfeed points out that the Bowling Green Republican copied language contained in an essay published by The Week magazine.

Multiple lines in Senator Paul’s op-ed appear to be lifted verbatim from the essay written by Dan Stewart and published shortly before the Senator’s op-ed came out.

Aides to Senator Paul have declined to answer questions about the incident.

However, aides told the website Politico that they would be “more cautious in presenting and attributing sources” after it was discovered that Paul used word-for-word Wikipedia entries during a speech last week.

Sports
2:54 pm
Mon November 4, 2013

ESPN: Louisville Cards Nation's Wealthiest Men's Basketball Program

The KFC Yum! Center was packed for virtually every U of L home game last season.
Credit gocards.com

The wealthiest men’s college basketball program resides in the Bluegrass State.

A new ESPN report puts the University of Louisville at the top of the list, with the program bringing in about $35 million in profits during last season’s title run.

The Louisville Cardinals had several things going for them last season that helped them earn the title of “wealthiest program” in the nation. They were at, or near, the top of the national rankings last season as they won the school's third NCAA championship, they had the third-highest attendance of any program in the country, and they benefited from the income generated through 71 luxury box seats at the KFC Yum! Center.

Seating a little over 22,000 fans per home game, the Yum! Center was filled to an average of 97.6% capacity last season during U of L’s home games.

One ESPN analyst wrote in the report that the Cardinals’ financial clout was enough to make “even some NBA executives envious.”

Health
1:53 pm
Tue October 29, 2013

Buyer Beware: Bogus Websites Designed to Look Like Official Health Exchange Sites

The Kentucky Attorney General's Office of Consumer Protection has some advice about how to avoid online scams related to the new federal health care law.

"Do not ever enter your personal information--if you're trying to sign up for a health care exchange--into any website that has the .com or .net address," said Allison Martin, the communications director for the Kentucky Attorney General's Office. "The only legitimate health care exchanges will be located with a .gov address."

Martin says scammers try to take advantage whenever a major federal or state law is changed. She says fraudulent web sites have been created to sell fake discount medical plans to unsuspecting consumers.

"The Attorney General sent cease and desist letters to the operators of two websites, and also sent civil subpoenas requesting information about these websites that mimicked the national health care exchange website."

The only website Kentuckians should use to sign up for the statewide health exchange is: kynect.ky.gov.

Regional
9:27 am
Tue October 29, 2013

Lawyer for Bardstown High School Principal: Client Did Not Steal Bourbon

Pappy Van Winkle is one of the mostly sought-after bourbons in the world.

The principal of Bardstown High School is denying that he was involved in the theft of some of the world's most prized bourbon. Chris Pickett met with detectives Monday and denied claims that he offered to sell bottle of Pappy Van Winkle to an Elizabethtown liquor store.

An attorney for Pickett told the Courier-Journal that this client “did not” try to sell bottles of the famous bourbon. The lawyer says Pickett was simply inquiring as to whether any Pappy Van Winkle was available for purchase.

Franklin County Sheriff Pat Melton—who is investigating the bourbon theft—said his office needed to verify information before clearing Pickett of any suspicion related to the case.

Sixty-five cases of Pappy Van Winkle bourbon and nine cases of rye were stolen from the Buffalo Trace Distillery in Frankfort. Investigators originally described the crime as an apparent inside job. Video surveillance taken October 20 at a Hardin County liquor store shows Pickett entering and leaving the store.

Sheriff Melton later described the individual in the video as a “person of interest.”

Politics
4:12 pm
Mon October 28, 2013

Paul Warns that Abortion and Biological Advances Could Eliminate Those Considered Undesirable

U.S. Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY)

Kentucky Senator Rand Paul warned a crowd at a religious college that scientific advances—coupled with abortion—could be used to eliminate those who are deemed to be undesirable.

Sen. Paul made the comments at Liberty University in Virginia, while campaigning on behalf of Virginia gubernatorial candidate Ken Cuccinelli. Paul, a Bowling Green Republican, said that those who are considered less intelligent or even overweight could be eliminated through abortion.

Paul was addressing an audience during the weekly convocation services at Liberty, the school founded by the late evangelical leader Jerry Falwell. Paul told his audience “in your lifetime, much of your potential—or lack thereof—can be known simply by swabbing the inside of your cheek. Are we prepared to select out the imperfect among us?”

Paul has become an active campaigner on behalf of other conservative Republican candidates across the nation, including Cuccinelli, who is taking on Democrat Terry McAuliffe in the Virginia Governor’s race that will be decided Nov. 5.

Regional
12:48 pm
Thu October 24, 2013

"Person of Interest" Sought in Possible Connection to Bourbon Heist

Pappy Van Winkle is one of the most sought-after bourbons in the world.

Police are searching for a man who tried to sell a large quantity of a famous bourbon to a Hardin County liquor store. The man—who was caught on surveillance tape—is wanted in questioning over a recent heist of Pappy Van Winkle bourbon.

Police in Franklin County started investigating last week when 65 cases of Pappy Van Winkle bourbon and nine cases of rye turned up missing at the Buffalo Trace Distillery, where the whiskey is bottled and aged. Pappy Van Winkle is routinely one of the most expensive whiskeys in the world, having gaining a cult-like status largely because there’s so little of it to go around each year.

The Courier-Journal reports that Franklin County Sheriff Pat Melton said the man who tried to sell the Pappy Van Winkle to the Hardin County liquor store appeared to be between the ages of 50 and 60, and was wearing what looked like a Bardstown High School pullover. Melton described the man as a “person of interest” and said authorities believe he drove a late model Ford F-150 that appeared to be green with a tan trim.

You can find a link to the surveillance video here.

Station Events
12:01 pm
Tue October 22, 2013

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During our 2013 fall fundraiser, you can call in your pledge at 1-800-599-9598.

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Politics
11:51 am
Tue October 22, 2013

Louisville Urologist to Challenge Rep. Yarmuth in 2014

Kentucky’s only Democratic member of Congress will have a challenger next year.

Michael Macfarlane is a Louisville urologist and a Republican who is vehemently opposed to the Affordable Care Act, or “Obamacare.” Saying the new health law will negatively impact Kentucky jobs and small businesses, Macfarlane announced he will challenge incumbent Democratic Congressman John Yarmuth during the 2014 election cycle.

According to the Courier-Journal, the 60-year-old Macfarlane has lived in Louisville since 1992 and has practiced at Jewish Hospital, Norton Healthcare, and Baptist East Hospital.

The 65-year-old Yarmuth has represented Kentucky’s Third House District since 2007, and currently stands as the only Democratic member of Kentucky’s congressional delegation.

Education
11:49 am
Mon October 21, 2013

School Boards in Kentucky Increasing Local Property Taxes in Light of Funding Cuts

Nearly half of Kentucky’s 173 school districts have increased local property tax rates as much as possible.

The moves come in light of education cuts at both the state and federal levels. Kentucky School Boards Association spokesman Brad Hughes told the Courier-Journal that “districts have no choice” but to turn to local taxpayers in order to find increased funding.

Eighty-one districts in the state have adopted tax rates that will increase revenue by 4 percent. Under Kentucky law, that’s the largest property taxes can be increased without being subject to voter recall.

School officials who have increased local property tax rates say they’re still coming out on the short end despite making the move. The Estill County School Board will see an additional $65,000 from a tax increase approved this year. But officials there are quick to point out that the district's primary state appropriation is down nearly $700,000 compared to 2009.

Politics
4:35 pm
Wed October 16, 2013

McConnell and Paul in Stronger Positions Following Debt Ceiling/Shutdown Fight?

U.S. Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY)

With a deal to end the debt ceiling debate and ongoing government shutdown apparently in place, a well-respected political column lists both of Kentucky’s Republican Senators as “winners” following the extended drama.

The Washington Post’s political column, “The Fix”, says both Senators Mitch McConnell and Rand Paul come out of the battle stronger than when it began. Post reporter Chris Cillizza says Paul benefited from appearing moderate compared to another Tea Party-backed Republican Senator, Ted Cruz. Both Cruz and Paul are believed to be strongly considering 2016 presidential runs, and both would try to capture much of the same electorate.

Cillizza says that by not leading the charge against the GOP establishment, Paul could come across as a kind of hybrid Tea Party candidate with at least some establishment backing.

Senator McConnell is once again being seen as one of the preeminent dealmakers in Washington, playing a central role at the end to come up with a deal after staying in the background during much of the debate.

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